The Fraud Act 2006 was passed following repeated criticism that its predecessor left large loopholes. The legislation being referred to was the Theft Act 1968. Whilst it is true that the Theft Act 1968 did not cover many offences – most fraud offences in question were not prevalent then or indeed even in existence. Offences of fraud have developed so much in type and sophistication that a new Act was required. This is supposedly all dealt with by the Fraud Act 2006.
The old offences of Fraud familiar to most were:
1. Obtaining a pecuniary advantage by deception (section 15 of the Theft Act 1968)
2. Obtaining a money transfer by deception (section 15a of the Theft Act 1968)
3. Obtaining a pecuniary advantage by deception (section 16 of the Theft Act 1968)
4. Obtaining services by deception (section 1 of the Theft Act 1978)
Gaps in the law outlining these offences and the statutes which enshrined them became obvious in some now infamous cases including as recently as R v Preddy (1996). A consultation paper was published by the Law Commission entitled “Legislating the Criminal Code: Fraud and Deception which culminated in its 2002 Fraud Report and draft Bill. It is this Bill which became the Fraud Act 2006.
So what did the Fraud Act 2006 change?
The Fraud Act 2006 repealed the above sections of the Theft Acts and three others. New fraud offences were created as outlined below:
– Fraud by false representation outlined in section 2 of the Act.
– Fraud by failing to disclose information outlined in section 3 of the Act.
– Fraud by abuse of position outlined in section 4 of the Act.
– Possession of articles for use in fraud outlined in section 6 of the Act.
– Making or supplying articles for use in fraud outlined in section 7 of the Act.
– Obtaining services dishonestly outlined in section 11 of the Act.
Our specialist counsel at criminal defence barristers have extensive experience representing those charged with offences of fraud. Our lead barrister, Stephen McCaffrey, has represented countless clients over many years from offences relating to minor fraud offences all the way up to complex baking frauds and major frauds such as “boiler room” frauds. He was involved a £5 million pound fraud last year where he respected the only defendant out of 8 to be acquitted. All others pleaded guilty or were convicted.
Contact criminal defence barristers to get expert advice right now.